Paula's Story

By Kaitlyn Szabo April 5, 2018

A couple pay stubs. A photo ID. That’s all Paula needed to get a payday loan to cover a car repair. Simple enough, right?
Not quite. The loan was then due back in full in two weeks. In theory, Paula could cover it with her next paycheck.
In reality, Paula was living paycheck to paycheck. Her money was already committed to rent, groceries, utility bills – how was she going to cover all these expenses, and more, plus the payday loan?
Simply put, her income wasn’t enough. Paula could only afford to renew the loan for another two weeks.
And then another two weeks. And then yet another two weeks.
“It became a way of life. Renew, renew, renew.” In her life, Paula estimates she has taken out at least 60 payday loans.

“Everything was caving in on me. I was never going to be able to pull myself out.”

She was trapped for about a year when an acquaintance enrolled in Exodus Lending. “When they said how much it helped them, I was like, it’s time to get out of this cycle.”
With Exodus Lending, Paula finally found a way to break free of the cycle for good. “I had longer to pay off the loan, which was more realistic. I felt incentivized to learn about creating a savings plan. Those things were easier to do because I was not feeling attacked anymore.”
No longer feeling threatened by payday lenders, Paula paid off her loan with Exodus Lending and is now payday loan debt free. She is energized to share her story and help others out of the cycle.

“It turned me into an advocate. I feel empowered. If I can save one person from having to go through the stress that I went through, that’s a reward for me.”